What is Carboneg's Position on EU Certification for Carbon Sequestration?

Ing. Jan Staš
April 25, 2022
Climate and carbon credits

You have only until 2 May 2022 to participate in the public consultation on the development of a legislative framework for EU rules on carbon sequestration certification. The initiative will develop the necessary rules for tracking, reporting and verifying the authenticity of carbon sequestration. The aim is to expand sustainable carbon sequestration and encourage the use of innovative solutions for CO2 capture, recycling and storage by farmers, foresters and industries. This represents a necessary and important step towards integrating carbon sequestration into EU climate policies," summarises the official description of the call for feedback.

And as this legislation directly affects Carboneg's activities, we took our chance to comment on the text of the proposal and sent our comments. Will you get involved too?

The European climate legal framework (Regulation EU 2021/1119) requires the EU to achieve a balance between greenhouse gas emissions and removals by 2050 at the latest and to achieve negative emissions thereafter, effectively erasing its historical emissions debt. Currently, the EU is not on an ideal path to achieving this goal: carbon sequestration in natural ecosystems has been declining in recent years and industrial carbon sequestration in the EU is currently below significant levels.

The main obstacle to increasing carbon sequestration rates is the lack of common EU standards to transparently identify activities that remove carbon from the atmosphere in a sustainable way. Existing public and private schemes, such as voluntary carbon markets, certify agricultural practices that improve carbon sequestration but use a wide, unclear range of approaches to quantify their climate benefits. Industrial carbon sequestration is rarely addressed.

Carbon sequestration certification faces a number of technical challenges. Carbon sequestration is under threat of uncontrolled re-emissions, as well as measurement and monitoring difficulties. Establishing a framework for the certification of carbon sequestration is therefore a key stepping stone to achieving a net contribution from carbon sequestration in line with the EU's climate neutrality objective.

Whether you are part of the private sector or the general public, please take the opportunity to engage in commenting on the draft rules for the certification of carbon sequestration in the EU. The online consultation is accessible via the Commission's central public consultation pages and DG CLIMA's website.

And how did Carboneg leader Václav Kurel comment on the call? Read below:

“We expect high general standards of carbon offsets based on EU certification principles. It should support all kinds of CDR (Carbon Dioxide Removal) – nature-based and technology-based, with long term and short term durability, etc. We need to remove CO2 from the atmosphere in high volumes very quickly so we need all of them.“

We recommend requiring these principles:

  • Carbon offsets are only issued for tonnes of CO2 that have been removed from the atmosphere.
  • The volume of CO2 removal is based on physical measurements or precise estimates based on scientific studies with minimal error.
  • Carbon removal is based on voluntary additional activities, not required by law
  • Carbon storage should be intended to have at least 50 years of permanence. The project owner should be able to guarantee at least 5 years of permanence of carbon storage.
  • The project should not generate any additional GHG emissions elsewhere, and if it does, they should be calculated and included in the emissions balance.
  • Soil and Forestry types of projects should set aside 10-20% of credits in a buffer pool that can be drawn down to account for “reversals” (carbon loss) over time. ”

Do you agree? Disagree? Or would you add anything else? Let us know at praha@carboneg.com. And most importantly! Don't forget that you too have until 2 May 2022 to read the official draft rules and influence their future shape - by commenting on the EC's page entitled Carbon Sequestration Certification - EU rules.

Interested in this topic and want to know more? Read our previous articles.

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